The Tribulations of Baby Birds

Eggs in nest

Four eggs hidden in the weeds

A few weeks ago, I was thrilled to find four songbird eggs in a nest hidden in the weeds next to my strawberries. Not only was I excited about the possibility of watching four nestlings progress towards adulthood–as was Sage when I told him about them–but I felt exuberantly vindicated about my less than assiduous weeding.

Alas, the garden giveth, and the garden taketh away. It wasn’t much longer before all that was left was a forlorn and lonely nest–no eggs in sight.

Orphan nest

My nest was literally empty. 

Fortunately, Sage recovered quickly from the loss of his unrealized songbirds, but it wasn’t the end of our encounters with infant avians: A few weeks later, we found a baby bird on the road in front of the Bent and Dent.

Baby bird

The baby bird in the road

I thought it was one of the homeliest little things I’d ever seen, with its bulging, oddly placed eyes and a shriveled worm at its feet, but Sage insisted it was cute and got indignant if I said anything to the contrary.

Cute or homely, though, the baby was in imminent danger of becoming a baby crepe with all the car and buggy traffic in the vicinity. I was reluctant to touch it, but I thought its odds would be greater if I moved it to the side of the road, so I did.

Sage watching baby bird 2

Sage examines the re-located chick.

Sage and I completed our shopping and set off for home, leaving the baby huddled where we’d left it under a tree. We never saw it again, but we both fervently hope it fared better than the four eggs in the garden.

It just ain’t easy being a baby bird.


One comment

  1. Your photos are lovely, especially the first one. Many lessons here, especially for Sage, learning early the mixed lessons of disappointment and hope. Something ate my rosebud. I was so much looking forward to seeing it in a vase on my kitchen window sill.

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